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Register a Company at Companies House Print E-mail

corporating a company and filing documents at Companies House can be done online at Companies House but to simplify the process, use the links below to find the forms you need.

The first step is to choose a company name that is not already active on the Company Names Index. All companies in UK end with the suffix ‘Limited’ (Private Limited Company) or ‘Plc’ (Public Limited Company).

Company name index

 

To incorporate a company complete the registration form online. It will contain the company name, registered address, name of the Company Secretary and personal details of the directors of the company. Registration costs £15.

The company secretary can be any person, and for very small companies with only one director and shareholder, it is not necessary to appoint a company secretary. The company secretary can file documents at Companies House on behalf of the company.

The directors are the people who control the activities of the company, are able to sign cheques and authorise the opening of bank accounts, and ultimately sign the financial statements of the company.  This is a responsible position and if not the shareholder, must be a person who can be trusted to run the activities of the company with due skill and diligence. The company director has duties specified in the Companies Act 2006 and can be personally held liable if anything goes wrong.

The Memorandum and Articles of Association must be completed and signed in the presence of a solicitor, Commissioner for Oaths (such as certain Chartered Accountants), Notary Public or Justice of the Peace. These are standard documents required by the Companies Act 2006 to formally state the company name, registered office, objects, liability, management and running of the Company. They are amended throughout the life of the company as certain events happen such as increasing the number of shares available to purchase. They must be signed by the shareholders, who are the owners of the company stated in the Memorandum and Articles of Association.

These documents are filed at Companies House and available to the public.  It is important to keep them updated for changes in company rules, as they are also used as evidence for disclosures in the financial statements of the company. The public can go online and download these aforementioned documents from Companies House for £1. To find an example, follow the link www.companieshouse.gov.uk, click on 'Find company information', then type in the company name, click on 'search' and select the desired company from the list. This brings up the company information page with lots of useful information such as the registered address, the due dates for filing of key documents such as the annual return and company accounts, the date of incorporation and the company registration number.  There is a link on the right side of the web page 'order information on this company'. Click on it to find all the documents filed for this company since incorporation and download any document for £1. 

The continuation page of the form to register the new company must be completed to declare that the Registration of the Company Complies with the Companies Act 2006. These four documents must be returned to Companies House with the standard registration fee or Same Day Incorporation service to complete the Registration quickly. Further continuation pages are available on the website where applicable.

Shares are portions of the company owned by different entities or individuals. Standard Companies have 1000 authorised shares @ a nominal value of £1 each. This means that the company is allowed to sell 1000 shares according to the rules of the Company.

The very first price at incorporation will be the nominal value. As the company trades, it increases in value and the shares become more expensive to buy. Issued shares are the shares already sold, for instance 100 shares at nominal value = £100.

The registered address is the address to which Companies House will post reminders to complete the annual return and accounts of the Company. It must be in England, Wales or Scotland. The annual return can be filed online by the Company Secretary or director by requesting a password from their website.

If the company is not trading, all that is required for filing at Companies House is the annual return and dormant company accounts.

The Company Secretary is required to supply consent for certain activities of the company, such as opening a bank account. The director of a company can sign accounts and make operational and financial decisions about the company on behalf of the shareholders. Failure to complete and file documents required by Companies House by their due dates results in automatic fines and penalties.

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